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Nick Clegg: inappropriate for Lord Rennard to rejoin Lib Dem lords if he does not apologise

January 18, 2014 2:14 PM
Originally published by East Midlands Liberal Democrats

A statement released Friday night by a Liberal Democrat spokesperson

"Nick Clegg is of the view that as long as Lord Rennard refuses the very reasonable request from Alistair Webster QC to apologise that it is inappropriate for him to rejoin the Liberal Democrat group in the House of Lords. Nick has communicated this to the Chief Whip and Leader of the House of Lords group.

"In addition, a growing number of party members have come forward to make representations to the party that Lord Rennard's refusal to apologise in itself brings the party into disrepute.

"The Lords Chief Whip and Leader of the House of Lords group will be discussing the matter with party HQ and will review the reinstatement of the whip on this basis."


John Wheaver - Kettering and Wellingborough

Lord Rennard's legal adviser, Lord Carlile said that the findings of the enquiry did not meet even the 50% criterion for establishing guilt. An apology is then an admission of guilt - and an effective "change of plea" to guilty after a not-guilty verdict. It also would amount to an admission of lying consistently for months.

My embarrassment with the Party is almost entirely because it has appeared muddle-headed - partly following the lead of the popular press (and the BBC!) in responding to newsworthy scandal and not to the known facts

I am not even implying that those who allege inappropriate behaviour are lying. Just that they have not made a case that convinced - and they cannot expect career- breaking sanctions based on allegation.

If we suffer a long damaging sleazy court case now it is worse than we deserve - but not much.